Helping Students Know Who They Are with Tami Peterson

Have you ever pondered the monumental impact that educators and parents have in shaping a student’s journey toward self-discovery and adulthood? With Tami Peterson’s return to our dialogue, we immerse ourselves in the profound exploration of this transformative phase. Our conversation delves into the essence of education, far surpassing the simple accumulation of knowledge, to embrace a more holistic approach where identity in Christ, purpose, and adeptness in navigating life’s intricate tapestry post-graduation are the focal points. Join us as we discuss the art of equipping students with discernment and problem-solving skills that are indispensable for thriving in the adult world.

Navigating the path of parenting in the fast-paced world we live in can often seem like a daunting climb up an unrelenting mountain. This episode takes a heartfelt look at the ‘deep work’ involved in parenting, fostering a connection with our children through the power of inquiry and shared experiences. We reflect on how matching our adult strides to those of our children can create moments of understanding and growth. From discussions on creating spaces for curiosity and critical thinking, to sharing the importance of rest and reflection during this climb, Tami Peterson brings to light the journey that binds us all in the pursuit of a meaningful education.

As our conversation draws to a close, we underscore the vital role discernment and wisdom play as our young adults stand at the crossroads of significant life choices. It’s about guiding them through moments that shape their future, be it selecting a college major or embarking on a career path. We highlight the ever-evolving responsibility of mentorship and the beauty of parental guidance that doesn’t cease with adulthood but continues to offer unwavering support through life’s various stages. Tami invites you to lean into this exchange, as we impart a sense of gratitude for the community and encourage a continuation of this essential dialogue.


Biography: Tami Peterson

Tami has decades of experience in the field of education serving as a teacher, counselor, and
administrator. For twelve years she served as Director of College Advising at Covenant Christian Academy, a classical, Christian PK-12 school, in Colleyville, Texas.

In 2012, Tami founded Life Architects Coaching, where she serves clients in discovering their calling through vocational discipleship, college and career coaching, and by supporting schools through providing professional development in support of a robust vocational discipleship program. In 2015 she was one of three designers of the curriculum for the NACCAP College Counselor Certification Program and was an instructor and the project manager for the first five cohorts.

Tami has numerous certifications in teaching and coaching, and has recently earned an M.A. in leadership, Theology, and Society from Regent College, Vancouver, BC, Canada.

She and her husband David live in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex and have two adult children.


00:09 – Davies Owens (Host)
For students, educators and parents, high school years are all about our children preparing for a successful launch into college and work. But how well do most students even know themselves? Do they have the support they need to appreciate God’s unique wiring and calling in their lives, and how can we, as parents and educators, do the deep work we need to do to support them fully, knowing the right questions to ask and the best tools to provide them with? Tami Peterson is back to help us, as parents and educators, with these important questions. Join us for this episode of Basecamp Live.

00:42 – Tim Dernlan (Announcement)
Mountains. We all face them as we seek to influence the next generation. Get equipped to conquer the challenges, some at the peak, and shape exceptionally thoughtful, compassionate and flourishing human beings. We call it ancient future education for raising the next generation. Welcome to Basecamp Live Now your host, Davies Owens.

01:04 – Davies Owens (Host)
Welcome to Basecamp Live Davies Owens, your host, here. You did it again. You made a really great decision in the midst of a very, very busy day for most of you. Some of you right now are driving, Some are doing laundry, some are in their classrooms after school. I have no idea exactly where you are, but I know that you are a part of a conversation that goes on every week that we like to think of as this process we’re doing raising the next generation, climbing up to the top of what can feel like Mount Everest. Along the way is good to connect and be encouraged by being together and in conversation.

The weird thing about podcasting, though, is it isn’t really a conversation. It’s me sitting in a room, like I am right now, with a microphone, but I know humbly that there will be thousands of you which there will be that will listen to this episode. I am always encouraged when you take a moment and reach out and maybe you’re asking a question or you just want to say hello. I thought maybe I’d formalize this invitation a little bit more, and I’ve done these things I call shoutouts, which is really just me saying hey, particular school, thanks for listening, and if you want to share just a sentence or two about your school. That’d be great. But the main purpose is just because it’s encouraging to know what God is doing around the world in big and small places, small towns, big cities, international prompting folks to come together and start our start schools and educate classically. It’s pretty amazing and so take a moment info at basecamplivecom. I’d love just to give a shout out. In part, it’s a way for us to know what you’re doing and to pray for you, so we would love to be a little bit more of an active community in that way, just by simply sending an email over. We are so grateful, as always in this podcast, for organizations that care about many of the things that we care about, which is raising the next generation, and want to provide resources to help us be successful, and I want to say thankful thank you to the America’s Christian Credit Union, the classic learning test, gordon College and Wilson Hill Academy for sponsoring this particular episode of Basecamp Live. You know Wilson Hill Academy is an amazing online classical school. They have 7,800 families around the world. It’s pretty amazing. They have a registration coming out for the 2024-25 school year on February 15th and, if you’re interested, go to their website and learn more about it.

At Wilson Hill Academy, we are in this conversation today with Tami Peterson, exploring this really important question of how do we prepare well our high schoolers. We certainly have an amazing form of education that rhetoric stage but there’s a lot of times students will come through our schools and through classical education and still, deep down inside, be searching for what makes me unique. How did God prepare me for being successful in college or work or wherever God is calling me to be? So Tami Peterson was on about a year ago. If you didn’t hear our episode last January, take a moment and do so. She’s the founder and CEO of Life Architects, a career coaching and consulting group that partners with students and parents in schools and to design pathways for meaningful work, and does a lot of work with college advisors. Just has a great perspective. So that further ado, here’s my conversation with Tami Peterson. welcome back to Basecamp Live.

04:16 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Thanks, I’m so excited to be here with you, jvs.

04:19 – Davies Owens (Host)
Well, it’s so good. You and I have so many encouraging conversations. Just, I love the work that you’re doing, trying to help families and students figure themselves out, literally like, who are you, how did, how did? How? Are you made by God? What’s your calling? What’s your purpose After we launch well, students into the bigger world?

It’s really important work. This is a good place to start. It’s kind of well, maybe first give folks a sense of where we’re headed, because we’re going to do a couple of episodes together. You were on here about a year ago and talked about vocational discipleship and, as you and I have started thinking about this idea of how do we prepare, as parents and as educators, students to know who they are, to launch into the into the big world, we really have to start with kind of the obvious question of like, well, what is a goal? Like, where are you going into what end? So how do you answer that question? People say, well, what’s the whole point of education and raising the next generation? How do you answer that? It’s a pretty good question.

05:14 – Tami Peterson (Host)
It’s a great question and I think it’s one we don’t think about too frequently because it’s a scary question. Like people are like oh, the end of the beginning. It’s so hard. And I point people to Ecclesiastes 311, one of my very favorite verses, where God says he has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. And it’s this wonderful tension of saying God is going to make things beautiful in its own time. Also, we feel that draw to eternity, we feel the way that we fit into the universe in this enchanted way that we talk about in classical education, where we’re like, yes, there’s something more than just the day-to-day, but then the last part of the verse just says we don’t know the end from the beginning.

So we have to put an end point in education because it’s called graduation and graduation is a very good thing. And so when we’re thinking about our portrait of a graduate or we’re thinking about what does a person who graduates from our school, moves out of our family into the adult world, what do they look like? And when we start thinking about that, we have to ask ourselves some questions. So when we do something, let’s say read a book, so we’re reading the Iliad. In Ruderick School we read the Iliad so that, what? So that they can Pick out the themes Sound intelligent.

Yeah, sound intelligent. Yeah, why so that, what? And so I love this because it’s a little litmus test. You know, we have them memorize scripture so that what we have them read books, we have them write essays, we have them make arguments, so that and the way we answer that question really is the tell us of our education, it’s the purpose of why we’re here.

07:23 – Davies Owens (Host)
And that really is, I think, most of. I mean, I’m fairly confident anyone listening to this podcast would not be like the average American parent who, if you stopped on the street and asked them what’s the point of your child’s education, they would say so they can get into a good college, to get a good job, oh, and anything else, so they can be happy. I mean, that’s pretty much the entire story. But what I’m hearing you say is that we hopefully would have a little more sophisticated answer and it would talk more about them knowing who they are in Christ and what they’re made for, and that all of these great readings and these learnings would kind of shape their identity. But you’re also saying that, again, graduating with having studied classical Christian education in and of itself is still not enough. You’re really equipping them actually to discern their way all the way through life. There’s an ongoing readiness for discernment. I guess Can you say it that way.

08:13 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yeah, absolutely, and we talk about education for life, and, of course, education for life is. The goal of the classical Christian education is we’re not just educating them for their childhood, we’re educating them for their adulthood as well, and so we have to think carefully about what kind of adulthood we’re thinking about for them, and, of course, we can’t control it, so we don’t see the end from the beginning. So here we are, at the beginning, going well, how do I get to the end then? And we’ve chosen classical education for a reason because we believe it will lead us to the end that we are looking for, which is, in my opinion, a confident and competent adult, so that they don’t have to know everything about everything in the middle of chaos, to be able to calm themselves, think through who they are as a person, know how they solve problems, have a discernment process for knowing what to do next, because the immobilization that happens when we’re, when we don’t know what to do, has to have a process, and that’s a discernment process.

09:25 – Davies Owens (Host)

So I think again the idea of that’s a great goal, that we want young people who are confident and who are competent, and we I mean again sort of defining the problem here I mean the reality is that’s in probably most classical school websites and homeschool curriculum, like we all kind of know that’s what we want.

The brutal reality, it sounds like, is that a lot of times students can have read all these things and gone through this process and they’re still fumbling a bit in terms of knowing if they’re confident or competent. I mean maybe it’s one, not the other and maybe parents are struggling with how do I, how do I help? I mean and these are this is the gritty reality of your about and you do this every day with, I mean professionally helping young people, you know, not only get ready to apply to colleges, but just figure out who they are at the deeper level. So I mean it sounds like there’s some blind spots. Is that maybe fair to say that we have, even though we’ve got a great, amazing form of education, we’re still potentially launching students that actually aren’t fully ready and fully formed in who they need to be. And in order to answer that confidence question, is that a fair statement?

10:31 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yeah, very fair. I do think the struggle that we have is that we we as parents aren’t always confident and competent, and I think you know kind of giving into that reality and saying, oh yeah, so here, why would my child be confident and competent if I am feeling incompetent in my own parenting? And part of the struggle is we think that we can read another book and it will help us be better parents, when in reality, yes, books help. And, of course, talking to people, I believe, having good friendships and mentors where you can bounce things off people and say, oh, how can I do this?

But doing our own deep work, like we talk about vocational discipleship and the idea of the process of that is deep work over time in community and as we’re discipling our children in that through a classical education, we have to continue to do our own deep work. And sometimes we think that means we have to read the books they’re reading. And sometimes that’s true. Sometimes in order for a parent to know what they’re doing, they need to read the book. But the reality is is, even if we just ask reflective questions of our students what are you reading? How are you thinking about that? How is that making you think about your own life, like really making what they’re doing part of conversations. I think it really helps them think through how they make decisions.

12:02 – Davies Owens (Host)
And we’re gonna get into later in the podcast some of these. Just what can you do? But I really I appreciate, because I think a lot of people listening are feeling that sense, especially if we’re kind of in this particular episode, we’re gonna come back in future episodes and kind of look at other areas and seasons in the life of. This is kind of we’re starting in reverse, so that we’re talking more about a high schooler really.

And what is that high schooler? How do you come alongside them and make sure that when they head off to college or career, that they are competent? And they are competent and I think that’s great, that you’re just calling it out for what it is which is so many of us weren’t classically educated. So many of us, even if we were, are living in a cultural moment where there’s just exhaustion and fatigue and chaos swirling around us. So the idea of like let’s all have these deep work sounds like it’s gonna take a lot of time and be really difficult. So maybe encourage folks right now who are saying like, oh my gosh, I gotta get a shovel and start digging this deep thing, like I’m just trying to get out the door and get the kids some food right now Like what are we talking about here, especially with high schoolers?

13:03 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yeah, oh, my goodness.

Yeah, it is so hard. And because of time. Time is, in my mind, part of Ecclesiastes 311 is the time component Is we have limited time, but God is making everything beautiful in its time. So today may not be beautiful, and that’s the reality of life. The reality is today may not be the time that. Is God making it beautiful today?

And if the answer to that question is no, today is not beautiful, then what is what’s going on? I mean, you just stop for a moment and say, hey, today’s really hard and this is the deep work. The deep work is not I need to read another book or I need to write something or I need to think through this a lot. The deep work is what do I do when I don’t know what to do? That’s the deep work. If you stop today and say I don’t know what to do with my teenager, they have to go off to college or they have to do something, and they don’t even like going to school how many are they gonna get to convince them that work is good? And we’ve been sold a bill of goods about work, like you know. So many people have said you just have to love your job and I’m like I don’t think that’s true. I think you need to love God, who gave you work to do, but you don’t have to love your job to have a full and rich life.

14:26 – Davies Owens (Host)
Right. So we’re really talking about both you as the adult, be it parent, administrator and or both you may wear both those hats and the student, especially in this case in the high school. And how do we move them forward into more self-awareness, more understanding? And I think sometimes, again, what can happen is that the school is maybe only doing so much because of time and reality, and maybe the only so much is we helped you fill out your college essay, but we really didn’t help you process kind of you individually and how you’re wired and how you’re thinking. And then the parent on the other side of the proverbial stream is looking across, going well, the school is gonna take care of that, and then meanwhile the student is kind of in the middle, going I don’t know I’m gonna go to this college because my friends went there and I’m in a major in business, because I wanna make money and I don’t really even know who I am, and so we all need to pause and reflect and go deep while we cancel. Why don’t we take a quick break, speaking of a pause and we’ll come back? And because I wanna unpack further. There’s a really important idea of deep work and encourage people in the process, that it’s not find 10 more hours in your day, that you don’t have to, but it can be done in very simple ways, just day over day. That it helped form and guide and direct ourselves and our students. It’s really a great message. We’ll be right back and continue the conversation.

I want to take just a moment during our break and let you know about the great work that’s being done by Wilson Hill Academy. They offer a vibrant, rich and accredited classical Christian education available to families and schools almost anywhere. With a click of a button, students join master teachers and friends live online from all over the world to engage in deep and lively discussions, solve math problems, conduct science experiments, translate Latin, deliver thesis presentations and so much more. At Wilson Hill, students make lifelong friends and graduate well-prepared for college and beyond. Discover what’s possible for your family or school at wilsonhillacademycom. You choose a traditional education for a reason, so why use standardized tests that don’t reflect that? Basecamp Live is proud to partner with Classic Learning Test, which offers online academic assessments that strengthen a traditional education. Clt’s assessments for grades three through 12 provide a meaningful metric of students’ abilities, equipping parents and educators and helping students pursue a fulfilling future. Explore CLT’s assessments by visiting wwwcltexamcom forward slash basecamp.

So, we think about deep work when we think about this calling that’s really on us as parents and as administrators to help a young person move out into the world confident and capable. And it really comes down to just sort of kind of the day-by-day engagement, and I’m struck so often by statistics I read that are very concerning. I mean, most families don’t have dinners together, even in Christian homes. Most of them spend maybe as little as one minute or less in any kind of conversation other than don’t forget your gym bag as you’re walking out the door. And what I’m hearing you say is like part of this idea is just we need to kind of, as much as we can in busy schedules, just slow down and walk next to our children and maybe use questions as one of the primary. It’s not just us showing up as the genius as well as the answer. So talk about like what does that look like to just kind of walk next to our children, especially in high school, day-by-day.

17:57 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yeah, I love the way you frame that. We don’t stop. So I think some parents and educators think that reflection is about stopping and you just use the phrase walk with them. And that’s that. Deuteronomy 6 question, like we’re, you know, here we are giving an answer to, as we are going, as we go on in our life, what are we doing with our children? So we’re walking next to them and we know that when we walk next to a child, our steps have to get smaller. So there’s always this bit of translation that we’re doing from our adult brain into our children’s brain. Even in the rhetoric school. They are not fully formed yet as humans and the struggle we have is that they are walking really fast because our culture requires us to walk really fast.

So I think we get the shame and guilt thing going when people say well, you need to spend dinners together. I mean and I do agree with that, eating dinner together is a wonderful thing. But I do think that sometimes we have to make compromises and we have to figure out so that what? So if we’re incapable of having dinner together a lot, what are we doing? How are we getting these moments where we’re asking questions?

And this is where asking questions is interesting, because when we talk about the Socratic method, I think sometimes we think of that as knowing the answer to the question we’re asking, and sometimes we’re surprised. We ask a question about a student’s interaction with a text and they say something we have not thought of. I’ve had that happen with my own children, also in the classroom, and this is the heart of coaching Like we’re doing the deep work or climbing the mountain, because the mountain is what creates a competent person. Is this deep work? But it’s every day asking questions that we might not know the answers to, because we’re discovering life together and I think we underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit in these moments where we don’t have to come up with a perfect question, we just have to be curious about our own children.

20:07 – Davies Owens (Host)
So how are things?

20:08 – Tami Peterson (Host)
going is a great opening line.

20:11 – Davies Owens (Host)
Right, and I think it’s just a good reminder that it’s kind of I just quote Eugene Peterson’s book, you know a long obedience in the same direction. And it’s just that idea of you. Know how do you? I don’t know if he’s related to you, by the way no he’s not, but he is one of my favorites.

Yeah, well, because I think you know, of course I’m fond of this idea of climbing the mountain. That’s the whole base camp idea is that we are trying to get to the top of what feels like Mount Everest. Along the way, we have to stop and have these base camps, and it’s really what we’re saying is that it’s not just join us on the podcast, but it’s also, you know, maybe take, I was talking to a business leader recently who had a high schooler and it was like this big discovery, like maybe I should take my children out occasionally for breakfast and a meal. Like that’s a great idea.

20:57 – Tami Peterson (Host)
And it’s just.

20:58 – Davies Owens (Host)
This is not rocket science, but just find margin in the midst of the chaos to say and then when you sit with them, don’t launch in lecture mode but ask questions. So so tell me, all right, so let’s just maybe micro role play here. If I’m, if I’m that kind of frazzled you know high school sophomore and I’m not have absolutely no idea what I would do with my life. I mean, what would be a couple of questions you would want maybe asked to ask me sitting at breakfast to help me start processing? What does that look like?

21:27 – Tami Peterson (Host)
It’s a little scary because sometimes you ask a question and you’re like I know what are they going to say, and I just am like what are you curious about about your sophomore? I’m curious about how they’re experiencing life. So I ask experiencing life questions. So what have you enjoyed the most in the last couple of weeks or last week, since we had breakfast or however? You’re setting up time with them, even if you’re just driving along with them, so what have you enjoyed? What has been most frustrating to you recently?

We’re asking questions about their experience of life, because discipleship is about walking alongside someone and if you’re not with them all the time, you don’t know what they’re experiencing. So I think sometimes we overlay our experience of childhood and adulthood, adolescence, moving into adulthood, and we we are like oh well, I’m sure they’re like me. Well, I don’t know about you, but neither of my children are me. I mean, they are like me, but they did not respond to things in their childhood the way I responded to them in mine, and so it’s a discovery process and I’m just telling you what a joy it is to discover who got imagined our children to be on the road Like I don’t know who, I don’t know, Like we don’t know the end from the beginning. Who is who are our children becoming? And that becoming process is about their actual experience of life Because, as we know, as adults we go through something and then, in the process of reflecting on it, we become a different person. We just learn, we mature, we grow, we add virtue. I mean there’s all these things that we start thinking about differently because of an experience, and discipleship is really about reflecting on experiences.

So I’m asking you about experience questions. If your child is doing a hobby, how is hockey going? You know? So we’re just kind of asking questions what has been most frustrating about it? What have you enjoyed the most? What would you tell someone who wants to do what you’re doing? Like there’s lots of questions that you can ask and I mean I just love living in community with young people, just like. So, Tell me about your life. What words have you learned this week that you didn’t know last week, that are kind of pop culture stuff? Like how are you connected to the world? You know it’s over the holidays. It was like you know, what are your? What are your friends talking about these days? I was always one of my favorite questions you know what’s?

24:01 – Davies Owens (Host)
a great question, you know, by the way, I need to write a book on that. Like the question like give us a cheat sheet. What question should we ask other than how is school? Yeah, do you pass the test? Yeah, ok, move on, but no, I think that’s really a good reminder too, and I think it buys.

You’re talking to me just about kind of these false maybe false goals that we set up, meaning that somehow we all think that our children are gonna hit the fall of their junior year or something and all of a sudden wake up in the morning fully competent and aware of who they are and where they’re supposed to go, and so we’ve created this sort of line end zone down there. That’s called graduation, but it doesn’t guarantee that a young person knows anything more about themselves than they did their freshman year. It doesn’t just happen, and it happens only through process, which is what you’re describing, and intentionality, and it’s not just oh, my school has a college advisor. I’m sure they’ll go meet with them and figure it all out. Like we all have to play a part in that, right, right.

25:01 – Tami Peterson (Host)
So and doing our own deep work. Continuing to do that where we wake up in the morning and say who am I and how am I going to work through today? What is our confidence in the day? And you know, the Holy Spirit’s our partner in that where we just ask him to be with us and help us to know how to grow into the person God has created us to be, and as we model that before our children, lots of wonderful things come out of that.

And the discussion is very often people will bring a struggle to me as a coach and I will say they’ll say so, what should I do? And I’m like I have no idea what you should do. So but that doesn’t mean we’re not gonna get to what you should do. It just means I am not you and I am not the wise guru that’s gonna tell you oh, this is how you should do this, and time is important.

So when we put graduation as a right of passage which I think is good and right, right to passage have been lost in our culture and I think graduation is a good one, one of the last room, anyone’s actually and we put that as a stake in the ground, saying you have achieved something but we can’t say you are fully formed. Like part of our struggle is we say at 18, you can do these things. In a 21, you can do these things. And sometimes wisdom is not with us, like I had a wonderful boss one time. She said you know, age and wisdom don’t come together. Sometimes age shows up all by itself.

26:32 – Grant Wiley (Announcement)
And I was.

26:33 – Tami Peterson (Host)
I’m like, yes, that is the truth. And so when we’re training our children in wisdom, which is what the true goal is, because competence and confidence comes from wise living. That’s why Proverbs one through 10, just you just look at it and go, oh my goodness, if I could just understand this fully, I would feel competent and confident all the time. But, we’re, you know, we’re all human beings and we struggle with stuff. Yeah.

26:59 – Davies Owens (Host)
Well, and I think it just it’s an invitation to have more grace, I think in terms of that pressure that I know, I know you talk to any high school senior, they’re gonna say, if I have one more person to ask me, where are you going to college, where do you get a major in? It’s like just stop everybody, stop with this sort of I mean it’s not an unreasonable question, but it feels like often I think the student interprets it it’s like you’re supposed to have it all figured out right now and it’s like who made that rule up? And why can’t we be a little more gracious both to ourselves and our students? And maybe you’re certainly need to take a gap year.

So, speaking of gap, why don’t we take a break? We’ll come back, because I wanna get into again. Just some more encouragement, especially for kind of the. You know we are the, we are the Sherpas going up the mountain, that being parents and educators and like what can we do? And I have heard you say, come back to this idea that I mean you can’t give away what you don’t have, like we need to embody being deep, deep people and as much as that fits into our chaotic lives right now.

But what does that look like? So we can give more wisdom to our young people. So let’s take a quick break and we’ll come right back. This episode of Base Camp Live is sponsored by the Heritage Program at Gordon College, a nationally ranked Christian liberal arts college located just north of Boston. We were made to flourish. But what does that look like? The Heritage Program invites your students to explore this question. Heritage is a one week summer program for high schoolers to experience life in Christian community. They will see the good life in practice as they live on campus, learn from professors, reflect on great text, cultivate deep friendships through discussion and creativity, and explore Boston and the North Shore. To learn more about this unique summer opportunity, visit gordonedu forward.

Slash heritage as schools and families. We engage with businesses every day and unfortunately, many of them are increasingly embracing more progressive ideologies and practices. That’s why Base Camp Live we’re proud to partner with America’s Christian Credit Union, a banking institution that only serves and invest in kingdom causes. So, whether you’re managing a school, a home, a small business, accu can meet your banking needs while upholding biblical values. Find out why tens of thousands of families and ministries across the country, including Base Camp Live, have chosen to bank with ACCU. By going today to americacristiancucom slash Base Camp Live, tim, we think about a young person standing in front of us, very eager and excited for a future that they don’t really know where they’re headed and they don’t really know who they are. Maybe talk to us just again. We’ve covered a lot of ground, but just as a parent first, and maybe as the educator, what are just some practical things that we could be doing in terms of preparing ourselves to be in that role of helping them gain, discern and wisdom? What’s the best advice you might have?

29:48 – Tami Peterson (Host)
My best advice always is to do your own deep work. It’s what are you thinking about? How God is leading you and continuing to grow. So it’s funny at the end of the year often we get people’s top 10 books that they read. Or they tell you I read 143 books last year and I’m always sort of going well, what do you remember from them and what are the takeaways from each one of them? Because the reality is is if you’re just ingesting things, you’re kind of a glutton because you can’t use it all, and so what are you taking away from what you’re learning in your personal growth?

And the other thing that I would say as a parent and as an educator is articulate your own discernment process, because part of confidence and competence is having a way to discern what to do next. And that is the question that we’re dealing with in the rhetoric school junior senior year, where people are like, well, I just don’t know what to do, and really and truly, as a parent, looking at your child and saying, well, son, here are my four ways, the four things that I do to discern what to do next. I wrote this into a curriculum for our young adults at our church, just like. Here is a way. It’s not the way, it’s not anything perfect, it’s just when I have to make a decision, and especially a decision as big as what do I do after graduation, I need to take time to think about what that decision is about and I may need some help. And so when I started articulating my own discernment process, it had a lot of pieces to it, but I basically came down to just a few points, because that’s what you need. You need just a few points for young people.

And it had to do basically with what does God say? What do my mentors and disciplers say, the people that speak truth to me. And then, when I spend time quietly in prayer, what am I sensing from God? And so much of our struggles become clear when we are still and we know that we are not God, which is the interesting inverse of that verse Be still and know that I am God.

Part of that is knowing that we are not God and that we don’t have to have the perfect answer. We just have to sit quietly, gain wisdom from our godly mentors and be able to make a decision that is not a permanent decision, like part of the college decision is what should you study, and we know even as much work as I do with people in discerning. Here are three pathways into what you’re gonna do in college. A lot of times we still have three choices, like I kind of think I might wanna be a doctor or an engineer or a I don’t know some. You know an aeronautic engineer or something, and I’m like looking at them going, okay, that’s great and yes, they’re not permanent. We have to put some choices in place and some choices are better made early than they are later because some programs require it.

33:07 – Davies Owens (Host)
Well, I mean really, as you’re saying that and I hope people hear this slide and clear and as a parent with three children, two of them still in college, and I think, and so this is this is not a theoretical conversation, I’m thinking about conversations I had even this weekend with with my own children and I wonder, you know we put so much emphasis on like picking the thing.

Like once you’ve declared the major or pick the school, then you’re done. Then just hands off, we’re done. We’ve done it all. And what I’m hearing you say is like, no, no, you’d be way better off. It’s about making sure they’ve got the tools for discernment, because I know I mean, I don’t know what statistics you’re seeing and I’m seeing recently that the average young person is going to change jobs 18 times ahead and have as many as seven different career environments. So this idea of picking a major and your set for life is is absolutely in no way reality in the modern world. And yet we act like if they could just answer that question, then we’ve all figured out and we can all. You know. Maybe it’s just because we’re tired as parents, we don’t know, like check the box, they’re done, we’re done. It’s not the case.

34:12 – Tami Peterson (Host)
So yeah, and I mean I think that’s the the most difficult thing is we’re never done. And then some. I had a parent ask you know, my kids are in there my kids are in their 30s, so that gives you some information about the process that we’ve been walking through and we’re never done. We’re not, and we’re not parenting anymore Like I’m not. I’m not parenting my adult children, but the question of, am I walking with them? Like we’re never not going to walk with our children?

34:40 – Tim Dernlan (Announcement)
That would be horrible for us to say You’re a consultant.

34:43 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yes, yeah, you’re really an advisor and this is why, as you grow, you’re sharing new things that you’re learning about yourself and a lot of times it’s not applicable to their life. I mean, you’re learning stuff that they’re not going to have to walk through because they are different than you, but you sharing. Well, this is how I do it. You may not do it this way, but here are some good points about how I think discernment happens and we speak out of who we are. Obviously and of course you know we started with the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Paul says follow me as I follow Christ. That is the picture of parenting Like your. Your kids are following you as you follow Christ, which is scary. Like that should get us praying. Every morning, a police cut Help me, help.

35:30 – Davies Owens (Host)
And obviously, yeah, Well, especially because all of our children are different and that’s the other pitfalls. Like my first two were like this you know, they declared and they went here and they did the thing. And then my third born, it’s like okay, hold on, they’re yeah absolutely.

35:43 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Keep us on our knees, right, that’s right, that’s exactly right, and one of the things about going through it on your knees it’s such a great quote is it’s slow, and that’s one of the reasons. This is what I love about it is because we know and I said this earlier we have to slow down. We have to make our steps smaller. To walk with young people on your knees is an easy way to do that. On your knees, you’re you naturally slow down. You can’t walk very fast on your knees, and so so I think that’s very helpful, a helpful metaphor.

36:12 – Davies Owens (Host)
So Well, these ideas again, we could go for hours talking about them, but I want to make sure is we’re kind of closing out the time, that you share just some of the resources that you have, both to parents and to schools, in kind of helping us become better at doing deep work, because there are great resources that that you’re doing. You’re training other people kind of in this process. So just talk a little bit about I think people will be very interested to hear.

36:38 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yeah, there’s. There’s a few ways to be connected to me. In the first way and it’s very small Sorry, I hate to talk about it, but I have a very small group of students that I work with and young adults that I work with and it’s my private practice. So that’s one way you can get connected to me and it’s small just because you’re so busy. Yes, yes, it’s not.

36:57 – Davies Owens (Host)
You’re only so many hours in the day, correct?

36:59 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Yes, I do, I am. I am cognizant of the fact that some people don’t have a resource near them and so I can direct you to someone. But what I? What I really love doing when I love working with young people, but I actually love creating community around these ideas, and so so I do personal professional development and service training for schools, but I also do aptitude testing workshops, which is really a family workshop. It’s not a student workshop.

The family comes, we do interactive things together, quite a few exercises where parents are sharing meaningful things to them about their work life and how they got to where they. They got what you know, what does your family think about work and how do we talk about this while we’re delivering and delivering information and fodder to the student from an assessment. So we do a Highlands ability battery and then we bring a community together with these students that have just taken this assessment and we put them in a room and we have lots of good discussion exercises around who they are but also how they fit into their community. Then I have a group that I run that is just for helping counselors that are typically counselors, are the only person on their campus and many times they’re doing other things, so they’re teaching a class is I do a director’s mastermind, and this director’s mastermind really is about let’s get some people together doing the same work you’re doing and let’s just talk about the pitfalls of the day. So right now we’re talking about financial aid and the FAFSA and things.

38:33 – Davies Owens (Host)
That is really clarifying conversations around what’s happening, and these are typically titled college advisors on most campuses.

38:41 – Grant Wiley (Announcement)
Correct, correct Okay.

38:45 – Davies Owens (Host)
Which and I know we’ve talked about that it’s that’s really an unfortunate title, because they really have a much bigger role than just trying to help your child fill out the form to go to college, and I think to everything we’ve just said in this podcast. It’s really about Positioning yourself to help them to do the deep work, for them to do the deep work, and that whole discipleship model is a much more accurate portrayal of what that role is.

39:07 – Tami Peterson (Host)
And then the big work that I’m doing right now is life architect associate training. That’s new in my company, life Architects, and this is for people who are building vocational discipleship on their campus or they want to think through this or they want to do a private practice, like my. Private practice is doing this as a work and it’s a. It’s a 10 month program that people enter into and it is, first of all, about your deep work, and so I don’t want you to be surprised by that. You’re going to be working through who you are and what you’re doing, and you’re going to take all the assessments that you would give to students and we’re going to talk has one on one’s with me every month where we’re working on your deep work, and how does this fit into your school, your program, your private practice, how can you use the tools that we have?

But first and foremost is how can you become the person that is capable of discipling other people in these areas? And it’s very important. And, of course, 10 months is just the beginning of it. Of course, you’ll be doing this for the rest of your life, which is great. I mean, I just love the vision of a long life of discipleship.

40:18 – Davies Owens (Host)
Absolutely. I love your vision and your enthusiasm, thanks as always for just helping to encourage us on this journey, because we obviously want. We spent 13 years, most of us, on this K-12 journey and we don’t want to stop at age when they head off to 13th grade and we want to prepare ourselves well and prepare them well. So there’s a lot here and I look forward to having you back on and we’ll talk next time, I guess, sort of about the logic years as middle school years. That’ll be really fun to get into that topic Absolutely, and working our way backwards to kindergarten, when we have all the time in front of us. So, at any rate, thanks so much as always for being on Basecamp Live. It’s always good to have a conversation with you.

40:58 – Tami Peterson (Host)
Thanks, great to be here.

41:01 – Grant Wiley (Announcement)
I want to give a thank you to Basecamp sponsors America’s Christian Credit Union, the Classic Learning Test, gordon College, gutenberg College and Wilson Hill Academy. Thank you also for listening. We would ask that you would go onto your podcast provider and give us a review. Let us know what you think. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to info at basecamplivecom and we’ll be sure to get back to you. Thanks again.